Place:Houma, Terrebonne, Louisiana, United States


Coordinates29.588°N 90.716°W
Located inTerrebonne, Louisiana, United States
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog

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Houma is the largest city in the parish seat of Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, United States and the largest principal city of the Houma–Bayou CaneThibodaux Metropolitan Statistical Area. The city's powers of government have been absorbed by the parish, which is now run by the Terrebonne Parish Consolidated Government. The population was 33,727 at the 2010 census, an increase of 1,334 over the 2000 tabulation of 32,393.

Many unincorporated areas are adjacent to the city of Houma. The largest, Bayou Cane, is an urbanized area commonly referred to by locals as being part of Houma, but it is not included in the city's census counts, and is a separate census-designated place. If the populations of the urbanized census-designated places were included with that of the city of Houma, the total would exceed 60,000 residents. The city was named after the historic Native American tribe of Houma people, believed to be related to the Choctaw. The United Houma Nation Tribe is recognized by the state of Louisiana, but it has not achieved federal recognition.

Houma was rated as an "Affordable" city by Demographia's 2013 International Housing Survey.



the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Houma was colonized by European Americans in 1834 at a former settlement of the Houma people, who historically occupied this area. The city was named after them. The city was incorporated in 1848. The United Houma Nation and two other Houma tribes have been recognized by the state. Houma is rated as a medium-size city.

The area was developed for sugar cane plantations in the antebellum years. These were worked primarily by large numbers of enslaved African Americans, as sugar cane cultivation and processing was highly labor intensive. Plantations were sited along the rivers and bayous in order to have access to water transportation.

Civil War

In 1862, four Union soldiers en route by wagon from New Orleans to Houma were ambushed by several armed citizens. Two of the Union men were killed, and the other two were seriously wounded.

In retaliation, Union officers brought 400 troops into Houma, and began a wholesale arrest of residents. In his 1963 book, historian John D. Winters describes the following events:

The investigation of the murders lasted several days but failed to reveal the guilty parties. To frighten the citizens, the home of a Doctor Jennings was burned, two other houses were torn down, and the home and slave quarters of an outlying plantation were burned. The soldiers next began to seize sheep, cattle, mules, wagons, and saddle horses. Negroes began to desert their masters and to flock to the protection of the troops. The frightened citizens had no means of resistance, and many found it hard to stand by and see their country despoiled by a few hundred troops.

Reconstruction to present

Sugar cane continued to be important after the war and into the 20th century. Skilled sugar cane workers struggled to organize under the Knights of Labor in the 1880s, seeking pay in cash rather than scrip and improved wages. The state helped planters suppress a major strike of 10,000 African-American workers in four sugar parishes in 1887. An estimated 50 were killed in November 1887 by local paramilitary whites in what is called the Thibodaux Massacre in Lafourche Parish, with hundreds more said to be wounded, dead or missing.

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